Car Review: Lexus RX 500h F Sport leads the way with style, performance and conserves fuel

Lexus RX 500h F Sport Performance
The Lexus RX 500h F Sport Performance is the latest version of the popular crossover. This hybrid is anything but boring. With 366 hp and 27 mpg if you try. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

The Lexus RX, the midsize crossover, has been a hit for the company for more than 20 years. So, Lexus doesn’t rest when it comes to updating its popular ride to keep it at the head of the class.

The Lexus RX has never been known as a fun and engaging crossover. However, Lexus’ latest RX promises to change that, especially with the F Sport Performance. That model is a hybrid to boot. A new 2.4L turbo engine and hybrid system work well together to provide motivation not usually associated with an RX crossover. Not only is the power and acceleration improving, but the handling is also tuned in the RX 500h F Sport for a better feel and real ability in the corners. And it’s still a comfy cruiser.

The redesigned RX has a new sculpted styling, and it looks rather racy in the F Sport Performance trim. It’s now more distinctive when compared to other RX models. The F Sport gets a special body kit with a lowered stance, a special grill and even blacked-out trim pieces that help set it apart and draw your eyes. The RX 500h F Sport further sets itself apart with large 21-inch dark alloy wheels with lower profile tires. Even the rear end carries high style with vents and body creases that are highlighted by the optional Copper Crest paint color.

Climb into the RX 500h F Sport Performance and the interior has a sporty driver-focused vibe. The seats look racy in black perforated leather with suede inserts. The chunky leather-covered steering wheel feels nice in your hands, and it looks cool in this crossover. The back seats are comfortable and provide good space for this five-seater. Lexus has excellent fit and finish and this new RX shows off improved quality from previous versions. The latest Lexus interface with a 14-inch touchscreen has better graphics than previous Lexus systems and it works better too.

Cost: $62,750; as tested $68,470

MPG: 27 mpg combined. I managed 24.8 mpg in 323 miles.

Options: $595 Copper Crest paint; $550 120V AC outlet; $450 digital key; $1,670 6.6 KW convenience package; $1,105 Lexus interface with 14-inch touchscreen

Safety: Lexus Safety System 3.0; pre-collision system with pedestrian detection; high-speed dynamic radar cruise control; lane departure alert; intelligent high beam headlights; lane change assist; front cross traffic alert and steering wheel touch sensor; panoramic view monitor; digital key

Things to know: The Lexus RX 500h F Sport Performance is the most fun-to-drive RX crossover with loads of power, an upscale interior and a hybrid system that allows for better miles per gallon.


  • Provides good power thanks to a new turbo engine and tried-and-true hybrid system
  • Improved interior with better materials and more space than before
  • Is actually engaging to drive with the ability to tackle back roads and the highway


  • Some rivals offer a sportier ride and handling
  • Fuel economy suffers when you explore that powerful new engine
  • Limited availability in F Sport Performance trim models

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2024 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up